"Serving the Children of Central Toledo since 1916"

The Kiwanis Club of Toledo was chartered as the 9th club in the United States on May 18, 1916. 1916 meetings were held at the Secor Hotel, where members were reminded to get to the May 22nd meeting "in time to sign the attendance blank" so they could "wear a BANGKOK or PANAMA HAT without cost all summer."
Initially the Kiwanis Club of Toledo was promoted as a businessmen's club with "Booster Letters" going out to members imploring them to trade with fellow Kiwanians. However, community service quickly became a focus of the club with the outbreak of World War I. The Toledo Kiwanians were very active in fund raising programs for the Red Cross during the first world war.
By 1922 the club had grown to 154 members and changed its emphasis from a business club to a community service organization. Club members had taken on many community service activities including entertaining 300 children at the Miami Childrens' Home and providing "moving pictures" and candy to the children at the Tubercular Hospital on a weekly basis.
A May 1922 Monthly Report turned into the Kiwanis Ohio District listed the following club activities: "During Park Week our Club entertained forty (40) children from the Fresh Air School and ninety (90) from the Lutheran Orphanage at Walbridge Park. These children were transported, entertained and fed by our members. Games and numerous methods of entertainment were provided."
By April of 1937, the Kiwanis of Toledo Secretary recorded an active membership of 146 members. Archives show the club had a balance of $813.66, of which $464.25 represented "Good Turn Fund" collections. The club was very active in sponsoring a Boy Scout Troop from the Miami Childrens' Home which they adopted in 1930.
In 1941, the club Secretary reported a membership of 175 active and 3 military members and an attendance average for November of 1941 of 62 members per week.
The club continued to grow throughout the 1940s and 50s. By 1961, membership had risen to 221 members with an average attendance at weekly meetings of 67. In April of 1961, the club's Good Turn Fund Committee asked for and received approval of the following budget:
Boys Clubs of Toledo: $402.25
YMCA: $250.00
Boy Scouts: $338.00
Citizens Day Care: $200.00
NIFTI: $100.00
1968 club archives record that the Kiwanis Club of Toledo continued its work at the Miami Childrens' Home by managing the merit badge exams of the club-sponsored Boy Scout Troop on a monthly basis. In February of 1968, records show that the club transported the Boy Scout troop to a local boat show where the troop was presented with their own boat. 1968 also included a unique award when club members were presented a plaque from the Champions of Champions Banquet recognizing them as having contributed the most to Amateur Sports in Toledo in 1967.
By the mid 1970's, membership in the club reached an all-time high of over 260 members and the price of lunch had risen to $3.50.
In 1983, club membership was at 213 members and the club continued its Boy Scout activities at the Miami Childrens' Home, sponsorship of activities at the Boys and Girls Clubs and Catholic Club of Toledo, and it began taking on duties at the Special Olympics.
The 1980's saw the club focus its attention toward the youth of Central Toledo with the adoption of Fulton School, located in Toledo's inner city.
Today, the Kiwanis Club of Toledo consists of over 70 active members who are involved in a variety of programs that serve our community and the youth of Central Toledo.  Fulton Elementary was closed in 2009 and our club has now adopted Sherman Elementary School. 2009 also marks the year we chartered a Key Club at Woodward High School.
NOTE: The Kiwanis Club of Toledo Archives are stored at the Ward M. Canaday Center located in the Carlson Library at the University of Toledo.

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